Time to lace up your trainers, kick that fear of running to the kerb and get ready for the first races of 2016! - I'm mostly speaking to myself here, but from conversations I've had and blogs I've read, I know I'm not alone. I also fear I have forgotten how to prepare for a race... What should I wear, what will I eat, what do I run with?!
With just over one week to go till race day for me, I'm ready to put a plan in place! So this is my ...or this is our "do one thing a day" task list to get us ready for race morning!
Monday: Pick Your Kit (and get it washed)
Pick your race day outfit. Something tried and tested (I know you've heard it a thousand times). Find everything from socks, underwear, rain jacket (it's London) to water bottle, headphones and your favourite pair of run tights. If anything needs washing, get it done tonight. And don't forget to store your wristbands / paperwork with your kit so it's easy to find on Sunday morning!
Tuesday: Plan Your Journey
Check transport to find your fastest / easiest route; keep an eye out for tube line closures or if the start line isn't too far from home you can consider hiring a Boris Bike and use it as a warm up! Leave enough time in your journey plan to allow for delays and give you time to get to the bag drop (where there potentially will be queues) and for a bathroom pit stop before the start!
Wednesday: Race Day Breakfast / Race Fuel
You know what works for you before a morning run; it's another one of those "stick to what you know" times. Good options are porridge, a banana or a bagel with peanut butter. Pack a snack bar in your bag for post race too! I've also put race fuel in this section too; if you use hydration tablets then make sure you have them packed. Usually you won't require gels etc for a 10km race so that's one less thing to worry about. Check you have everything you need in your cupboard at home! If not, order a food delivery or pop to the shops in your lunch break today!
Thursday: Check The Weather
Double check the weather for race day (it can still change) and make sure you have options in your pile of kit for sunshine (hat / visor, suncream, shorts), rain (rain jacket, change of clothes), cold (extra layers for post run, bin bag for start line) and everything in between!
Friday: Start Getting Hydrated
Try your best to increase your fluid intake from today onwards. This will help your energy levels in the lead up to race day and keep you well hydrated! You have plenty of options including water (love me some sparkling), Vita Coco Water plus your tea and coffee counts too (although they can be dehydrating in large quantities and try to keep sugar to a minimum).
Saturday: Shake Out Run
Get in a little 2 - 5km run to remind your legs what they need to do! Then chill out, rest your legs and catch a movie :) This is also a good time to update your GPS watch so it connects faster to the satellites on race morning (tomorrow)! I'm always the one shouting "wait, my GPS isn't ready!". Then all that's left is to get a good nights sleep (if you can!).
Sunday: Let's Do This!
You've done all the preparation now its time to enjoy the race itself! Then you wear your medal with pride ALL DAY LONG ...because race day is basically the only day you can!!
Got anything on your mind?! or have any other preparation tips for us?!